open Story Tellers


At Openstorytellers we revel in collaborating with other companies and artists.  

In early 2023, we were approached by artists Pauline Scott-Garrett and Emma Kerr as we operate in the building RISE where Pauline was to research and create work for an exhibition called “Undertow” (for The Whittox Gallery also in the same building). 

Pauline described the work as an unseen or invisible force within the water and the sea. It is generally used to describe a potentially dangerous current that can push or pull with, or against, the tide. 

Pauline was awarded a Develop Your Creative Potential grant by Arts Council England (via the National Lottery) and we were happy to be included in Pauline’s research. 

Pauline and Emma each took the time to get to know who we are and we discovered many crossovers in our approach to creating art. This truly came to realisation at the private view – attended by our Artistic Director where we talked about the themes of Undertow, and about how those themes are reflected in the lived experiences of people with learning disabilities – such as the process of “finding a home” and the opportunity (or lack thereof) for people to operate agency upon their living circumstances. 

We also talked about the inner and outer worlds of the artists as being reflected in the land/sea relationship of the maps, movement and migration material in Undertow. 

The subsequent workshop which they brought to us at Openstorytellers took place in October 2023. 

Pauline and Emma used a wide variety of objects to stimulate a creative – and very tactile – experience of the exhibition. 

The workshop was held in way in which spontaneity and intuition could flow between visiting and resident artists alike. 

Bringing sensory objects into OpenStoryTellers, for the artists to explore the themes for themselves, creating their own unique work with, and inspired by, the stimuli. The artists all worked respectfully, mindfully and with great integrity together. The way Pauline and Emma asked us to share our ideas and make art of our own which inspired us to really connect with the workshop and the exhibition. 

The effects of the work continues to resonate and ripple throughout our organisation and we always look forward to see where we will be taken to next.